What the Beat must beat


When it comes to affordable diesel hatchbacks, it is not the upcoming Maruti Suzuki Swift DDiS that the Chevrolet Beat TCDi will have to fight with, but these two cars. Here’s a closer look at two diesel cars that can make the Beat TCDi’s life uncomfortable:



Tata Indica eV2
The 25 kmpl tag that the Indica eV2 promises is its main selling point. Of course, the car is priced extremely competitively; at Rs 4 lakh onwards in Mumbai showrooms, the eV2 is well within the reach of many. On the price front, we believe General Motors will find it difficult to match it with the Beat TCDi. Other good attributes of the Indica include generous interior space and an ability to handle bad roads well. But the Indica is long in the tooth now and this is one of its vulnerable areas. Compared to the Indica’s dated looks, the Beat looks like it’s landed from outer space. Plus the Tata’s poor fit and finish and refinement issues stand out sorely when compared to the trendy and contemporary insides of the Chevy. Of course, the Beat cannot match the interior room of the Indica, but it does offer comfort for four passengers when the roads take a turn for the worse. The Indica may sip fuel and cruise on the highway, but the Beat is a better city car. The Tata makes business sense, while the Beat makes personal sense.


Ford Figo Duratorq
We think General Motors will try undercutting the entry-level diesel Figo’s ex-showroom Mumbai price of Rs 4.8 lakh. But will that be enough to take some market share away from Ford’s bestseller? Perhaps not. Compared to the Beat, the Figo is a better car to drive. Its four-cylinder engine is flexible for the highway as well as the city, the steering feedback is good and it has an ability to provide handling excitement as well. Besides that, the Figo offers more interior space than the Beat and is comfortable for rear passengers as well. Both cars will deliver great fuel economy, with the Beat taking the upper hand thanks to a smaller three-cylinder motor. The Chevy also scores with its funky external styling and an extremely youthful inside job, but the Figo is, overall, a better car.